The Games for Change (G4C) Student Challenge is a national game design program that invites students to create digital games about issues impacting their communities. The Challenge is run in cities across the United States, and includes professional development in game-based learning for 20 teachers per city, in-school and after-school game making courses supported by curriculum partner Mouse, student game jams and workshops, mentorship by professional game designers and social issue themes with multimedia content provided by cause-based partners. The program culminates with awards ceremonies and public exhibitions of student games at local cultural institutions in each city, and both games and work-related opportunities as prizes.
The goal of the Challenge program is to expose and excite students to work-related opportunities in STEM and game design, engage students and teachers in civic issues impacting their cities and communities, build capacity for teachers to use game-based learning tools and approaches and students to learn game design as a method for storytelling and 21st century skill development. The Challenge was piloted by G4C in NYC in 2015 in collaboration with the NYC Department of Education and a coalition of partners, and expanded in 2016 to Pittsburgh and Dallas. The 2017-2018 Student Challenge is currently running in New York City, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Detroit and Atlanta.